Possibilities and Timebombs

The grass pollen is out of control. I was snorting and sniffling all during X-Men 3 last night – much to Ron’s chagrin. I tried to time my sniffs with the explosions. I can blow my nose for an hour and it won’t help.

Chagrin is another word you only hear in one context. ‘Much to my…’ you never hear it in another way. Or at least I don’t.

So I’m at the straight(er) Caribou Coffee on Clark and Wellington drinking iced tea while I wait for my decongestants to kick in and then I’m meeting Ron at the gym. Today is legs day. Ran into Richard my ex-boyfriend and he said ‘You’ve gotten big! Wow – you’re huge!’ during Memorial Day weekend. Then I ran into Fred who is an actor that’s come back from California ‘Karen said you’d gotten smaller but looks like you’re bigger’ (Fred is a personal trainer so it makes it even more a compliment. And then when we went to see Al Gore with Vaughn, Vaughn also mentioned my impending beefification. That means I’m in a good zone. I’ve been working out five times a week now in the mornings like clockwork for about 4 weeks, so now the challenge is to stay in this habit and start integrating more dietary changes – or some yoga – or some running.

Last Friday I did something totally out of character. I’d had five of my colleagues all mention to me ideas around thinking much larger about my business, talents and influence. So I did something that is a bit indulgent, I invited them all on a conference call to put the puzzle pieces together. At the crux of my personal development is a deep need for big self-expression and a deep fear of self-exposure. Also, at the basis was the fact that I continually try to put myself into easy boxes and classifications instead of ‘letting the How take care of itself.’ Other elements are the edgyness inherent in my perspective that is by definition unique and useful – and trusting deeply in the value of that. Of course the things we do naturally are the ones we take for granted and balk at actually getting paid for.

Something Eric and I picked up this week was where does Ron fit in all this. I think because his job is hermetically sealed from me, I keep my work hermetically sealed from him. Which is probably to my detriment. I see Ron as an escape, a release, a retreat from my work because he makes me laugh and we cuddle and hang out and watch movies or do stuff. Perhaps I’m not asking more of him (and not taking him up on offer to help). Last night we were walking home from Jewel (after a lengthy ‘where are we gonna eat’ stroll) with a sack of fruits and a frozen pizza and Ron said he thinks I don’t challenge him enough on stuff. I think Ron likes a certain tenacity that I’m not providing. Like he really lit up when Vaughn challenged Ron on his views about Condileeza Rice (Ron admires her for being a minority woman that’s made it to the top, Vaughn says she only had to walk 2 steps since she was already from money).

Another element that came out of my mastermind call with my colleagues was that there is a burning desire for political action. That I’ve resisted it, I’ve denied it. But I was raised to feel like things are in our power to change. And after seeing Gore in his movie, I felt even more so. What would I tour the world giving a presentation on? I think it is the integration of these elements: politics, creativity, technology and marketing… that is the synthesis… and I think that I don’t need to over-analyze it. Just get on with it.

Unabdriged Bookstore has my book in the window along with the stickers ‘Autographed Copy’ and ‘Local Author.’

I get so frustrated with myself and my delaying tactics. My tendency to make mountains out of molehills. Or as Ron would say ‘You’re being OA!’ Which means ‘you’re overacting.’ Or as mom would say, ‘You’re all ate up!’ Or as dad would say, ‘You do this for fun – you’re own personal debasement.’

Echoing all of this personal future introspection is a ton of reading about our global future. I just finished Revolutionary Wealth (the Tofflers) and A Whole New Mind (Dan Pink). These books, coupled with American Theocracy (Kevin Phillips), I think give a great trajectory of the next several decades. I should probably also read Guns, Germs and Steel as well. As China and India become more and more educated they will move beyond manufacturing… what happens when the US is the most uneducated country…? Will the jobs move back here? As every new business popping up in Lakeview is either a bank or a nail salon, I wonder if this is micro echoing the macro. You know how I like whole systems. A Whole New Mind posits that in an era of outsourcing, abundance and automation that when we have all of our survival needs over-met that there is a hunger for finding meaning and self-actualization (paging Dr. Maslow of course). Phillips would warn us that global oil crises and radical religion in the US might throw us back into an intellectual stone age.

I see so many timebombs: oil, pensions, real estate, national debt, household debt, the US dollar, global warming, health care, fundies obsessed with End Times, overpopulation… it’s as if our fruition and abundance is hurling us down hole we might not be able to crawl out of. Maybe I’m just being, as Mr. Garrisson would say, a ‘Negative Nancy.’

Talking with Ron and Vaughn is so valuable. Ron was a kid during the Marcos era in the Phillippines and remembers ditching school to go watch the riots. Vaughn was very active in the anti-Apartheid movement in South Africa.






6 responses to “Possibilities and Timebombs”

  1. DANNY O'BRYAN Avatar

    When you change your environment you change your perspective on things.Jump for the bar and see where it swings you.
    Maybe itis time to go to Europe or Asia and see the world from where they stand.When you transition from one form to another you will lose some frineds and find new ones.You work in your apartment you are a hermit……run to daylight ….use the force luke…………..d

  2. JB Avatar

    Most importantly, I think we need some evidence of this biggification. New pic?

  3. Gigamatt Avatar

    Chagrin Falls! Ok, that’s not using it in a sentence, I suppose.

  4. Old friend Avatar
    Old friend

    I am not sure that I believe everything that you do politically, but I do believe that you would be a wonderfully observant, intellegent and most of the time, honest addition to the realm. You have experienced a great deal of diversity in your life, but I concur with the other responses, that you may need to travel outside of the US to get a true perspective of what we have, and don’t have. We are not the most powerful nation in the world as politicians would have us believe. If Vietnam, and the first Iran/Irac war did not prove that, this one will. My husband is involved in the rebuilding of Irac and has seen and heard first hand what is occurring over there. If the things that we currently have to worry about is nail salons and global warming, think about what they are worrying about, how to heat thier homes (if they have them) there is no question about pulling the last green plant if it is the only thing that you have to eat, or offer your kids. I agree that something needs to be done in the US, but until the government mandates recycling and economy cars, I doubt that anyone could change the view of the US people as a whole. Many of us are doing well just to survive, yet we can still find the time to teach our children about gardening, recycling, reusing, and other valuable environment friendly habits. It is in the hands of the educators and families to create a better future for our world. Hope this isn’t too much, but I hope that some of the visitors to your blog will remember these words as they make decisions about how to raise their children, or before they oogle the big SUV’s or sportscar on the road. ALot is learned through what is modeled, not what is said.

  5. beastmomma Avatar

    I agree with old friend that a lot of learning comes through what is modeled and not what is said. One of the things that I admire about you Andy is how you really examine things and take action to new ways of being in the world out. Yes, there is some things you would like to change as shown by your entries. However, there also is a lot that is courageous— imaging a world different than the one in which we will and brainstorming ways to make that happen.

  6. Andrew D. Avatar
    Andrew D.

    I know you provide unique perspectives on so many important matters. You have a tremendous talent in addressing issues with intelligence, civility, tolerance and understanding. Your attitude used to be very present in our country’s political and social discourse. Yes, spending time abroad would broaden your mind. But, it would not change your fundamental decency. Your conscious decision to be out, open and to allow us in your life would make a rare starting point for a very successfull political career.

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